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Target Taps PepsiCo Exec as CEO for Needed Shakeup

Brian Cornell is the first outsider to lead Target, and he has his work cut out for him following last year's massive data breach.
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/ Source: Reuters

Beleaguered Target named former PepsiCo and Wal-Mart executive Brian Cornell as CEO and chairman as it tries to regain customer confidence following a devastating data breach last year. Cornell, the first outsider to lead Target Corp., has his work cut out for him. The company's comparable store sales have declined in three of the last five quarters, while store visits have fallen for six straight quarters. An ambitious expansion into Canada has stumbled. Cornell takes over for former CEO Gregg Steinhafel, who resigned in the wake of the breach. Steinhafel had been dealing with problems on other fronts too, including perceptions that Target charges higher prices than its rivals and concerns that it had lost its magic touch for cheap chic offerings. From 2009 to 2012, Cornell led a turn-around at Sam's Club, Wal-Mart's slowest growing business at the time. In May 2012, he joined PepsiCo Inc. to head the company's largest business, Americas Foods unit, which makes Frito Lay chips. Cornell, 55, takes the top post Aug. 12. Chief Financial Officer John Mulligan has led Target in the interim and will return full time to those duties.


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-Reuters and The Associated Press